A difficult start to the 2020-21 season came with another blow for Derby boys’ basketball.
Following its 84-71 loss to Campus on Tuesday, Jan. 13, the team was hit by a COVID-19 quarantine due to a positive case on the roster. It forced the cancellation of all three games of the Dodge City Tournament of Champions.
Derby (2-4, 1-3 in AVCTL-I) was set to travel to Junction City to open the tournament on Tuesday, Jan. 19. Two more games were guaranteed for Jan. 21 and 23.
Derby is exploring new games to fill these slots, but no additions have been made at this time.
Pending any changes to the time off or any additional cases, the team will resume action on Tuesday, Jan. 26 against Newton.
A home-heavy schedule might be the boost Derby needs. After playing just one home game through its first six games, three of its next four will be inside Derby High School.
Junior Fontaine Williams leads the Panthers with a team-high 16.2 points per game. Classmate Amari Thomas is its only other player in double digits, averaging 12.2 points per contest.
Campus shooting cuts off Derby’s hopes of road win
Derby dropped its second-straight road game in AVCTL-I play, falling 84-71 to rival Campus. A hot Colt offense hit 12 3-pointers in the win.
Eight unanswered Derby points out of halftime cut a once 16-point deficit down to seven. However, Campus answered its four-minute stretch of no field goals and pulled away with nine consecutive points.
Junior Fontaine Williams led Derby with 24 points, while classmate Amari Thomas added 14. Derby falls to 2-4 overall and 1-3 in AVCTL-I play. Colt senior and Tulsa signee Sterling Chapman scored 32 points to lead them in the win. Senior transfer Stevie Strong added 22.
“Great players made some great plays for them,” coach Brett Flory said. “I loved our team’s spirit and their fight, though. Offensively we were much better than we have been in a long time, but we have to find our defensive identity and that’s on me.”
Campus offensive rebounds were also a killer for Derby’s comeback hopes. Trailing 47-40, Flory’s crew sent the Colts to the line for seven free throws. They only made three, but picked up the remnants of the possession off the glass.
That Derby deficit later ballooned to 24 points at the start of the fourth quarter.
“Sterling getting some of those is one thing, but the rest of that team shouldn’t out-rebound us,” Flory said. “That’s something we have to for sure clean up and need to. This isn’t their group last year where every dude was 6-foot-5 or 6-foot-6.”
DERBY: 13 19 13 26— 71
CAMPUS: 26 19 21 18— 84
PANTHERS: Williams 24, Thomas 14, Chadwick 7, Clemons 6, Titus 6, Parke 5, Ray 5, Same 4.
COLTS: Chapman 32, Strong 22, Hall 10, Burton 6, Sutter 6, Young 6, Howard 2.